Germany must treble green capacity to meet 2050 goal – study

May 14, 2020 | Montel

(Montel) Germany must more than treble existing green capacity to reach its 2050 goal of a 95% cut in carbon emissions on 1990 levels, according to a new study by the Fraunhofer institute published on Wednesday.

In order to reach near carbon neutrality, the country would have to base its power generation mainly on renewables, to provide electricity for the power, heat and transportation sectors, it added.

The institute suggested installed capacity of onshore and offshore wind of 150-200 GW and 200-300 GW for solar, more than treble current installed wind capacity of 59 GW and five-fold the 47 GW of existing solar capacity.

“This implies yearly additions of 7.5-10 GW of solar and wind capacities,” the study’s authors said.

Germany is currently planning to have up to 71 GW of installed onshore wind, 20 GW of offshore wind and 98 GW of solar power installations by the end of the next decade.

No detailed path
It also wants to cover 65% of the country’s gross power demand from renewables by 2030, from around 52% in the first quarter of this year but has no detailed path for growth beyond the end of the next decade.

“The German energy sector will be dominated by volatile power,” the study said, adding as well as renewables growth therefore, there should be back-up in the form of 50-70 GW of gas-fired plants and fuel cells.

“However, incentives are needed to ensure that such power plants can be operated economically at low capacity.”

In terms of power demand, the institute expected German consumption to double to around 900-1,110 TWh in 2050, compared to around 570 TWh last year, due to the electrification of the transport and heat sectors.

Reporting by:
Julia Demirdag
17:01, Wednesday, 13 May 2020